According to new data, Immigration centers in the UK have released 6% of the detainees who after being sexually and physically abused are classified as “vulnerable and at risk.”
As revealed by the annual government report, 364 out of the 6,300 people whom the social workers and doctors identified as being at “risk of harm” were permitted out of the detention subsequently.
As identified, these cases were parts of an introduced scheme in 2016, to free the vulnerable adults from detention.
These figures were considered totally unacceptable by the campaigners especially following the Windrush scandal.
Earlier during the week, the Home Office was to be stripped of its Immigration detention powers, as requested by the Joint Committee on Human Rights (JCHR). This office was to be given to independent judges.
According to Sonya Sceats, Chief Executive of Freedom from Torture, a charity organization, the figures represented an indictment on the Home secretary’s high profile but floundering agenda set to make a more humane immigration system after the Windrush scandal.
In 2016, a policy known as the Government’s Adult at Risk was introduced to release adults who were traumatized and classified as “vulnerable and at risk,” due to their involvement with physical and sexual abuse, from detention. It was believed that if they were placed in detention, they would be vulnerable to harm.
Those in this category but not released from the detention have been seen to be at risk of suicide and self-harming, argues campaigners.
According to data made available to Freedom of Torture through Freedom of Information (FOI) request, it was revealed that between September 2017 and September 2018, medical professionals had concluded in 907 instances, that there was more trauma for such individuals and as such, the detainee would be harmed by detention; and out of these cases, 502 individuals were released.
Another new FOI shows that, at a time, more than a thousand adults were at risk in detention and about 27,000 people go into the Immigration detention estate yearly.
JCHR’s report last week had preempted the figures from FOI by causing doubt about the effectiveness of the scheme. The MPs also stated that they were concerned that the individuals involved were not given adequate protection as should be by the policy.
According to the Home office spokesman, detention is only used when necessary; even though immigration detention forms an essential part of the broader immigration system.
The Home Secretary has promised to further explore new detention alternatives, improve the available support for the vulnerable detainees, initiate a new drive on detainees’ dignity and also make sure the Immigration detention is more transparent.
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